In Do I Have to Wear Black?, Mortellus escorts us behind the veil of our own primal fears and our modern squeamishness, sharing guidance and hard-won wisdom with grace, sensitivity, and gentle humor. From profound insights about the afterlife to guidance on ritual structure, from advice on consoling bereaved loved ones to practical instructions on home burial and building a coffin, Do I Have to Wear Black? is the book about death modern Pagans have desperately needed, a book which manages the improbable task of easing the journey of grief, loss, and death for all of us who share the common human inheritance of mortality.

Misha Magdalene | Author

Outside The Charmed Circle

It’s said that death is the next great adventure, but for many of today’s modern Pagans and witches, there’s a lack of information about how to navigate end-of-life planning, funeral arrangements, and the frightening territory of the grieving process. Mortellus brings us what we’ve been needing: a field guide to modern death and dying, viewed from the perspective of a Pagan who works professionally with the dead. From rituals to an in-depth look at mortuary science, Do I Have to Wear Black? is a valuable resource for readers who follow Pagan and earth-based spiritual belief systems.

PAtti Wigington | Author

Badass Ancestors

Can a book about death and dying be uplifting? This one certainly is! This book is a much-need guide to the mythology and ritual around death in the pagan religions. It covers everything a pagan and his/her family, the funeral director, clergy and guests could need or want to know when planning, conducting or attending a pagan funeral. I have studied pagan religions for years and still learned a lot. The mythology section was very comforting and actually helped ease my own fear of death. In addition to providing thorough information on the traditions of a variety of pagan traditions, it also provides guidance on wills and final wish planning, and personal stories that humanize the concepts in the book. The book also does an amazing job of talking about your options for interment/other disposal of your body, which is very eye-opening.

Nicole Evelina | Author

Daughter of Destiny

Do I Have to Wear Black is a comprehensive and unique collection of rites and rituals for the death and dying process, specifically for Witches, Wiccans, Pagans, and death workers. Mortellus touches on the uniqueness of our spirituality in a way that is accessible and easy to understand. Truly an excellent book for any human that will be touched by death.

Phoenix LeFae | Author

What is Remembered Lives

Mortellus' gorgeous prose is both informative and moving, filling a significant gap in Pagan literature and promising to serve as a critical reference for years to come. A must for Pagan clergy as well as those interested in that age-old question: what about when we die?


And who isn't curious about that?

Thorn Mooney | Author Traditional Wicca, a Seekers Guide

A diverse, practical, and much needed guide to the funerary mysteries of death, dying, and bereavement. In a time where an established spiritual community is present to witness its elders transcend their own mortality, Mortellus has given us an informative and viable means to see our journey to its momentary conclusion, socially as well as spiritually.

Christopher Orapello | Artist 

CoAuthor Besom, Stang & Sword

CoHost of Down At The Crossroads

I never thought I could be so excited at the prospect of how to dispose of my own corpse. Mortellus’s unique expertise as a mortician shines through and makes "Do I Have To Wear Black?" a fascinating read. Throughout the book, technical notes on the logistical, scientific, and legal considerations of dealing with death provide the reader with insight that only an experienced death worker can give.

Jack Chanek | Author

Qabalah for Wiccans

This book fills an important need in Pagan literature. Unique in its point of view, Do I Have to Wear Black? is a vital guide for Pagans on a road we will all, eventually, travel.

Deborah Lipp | Author

Magical Power For Beginners

Grief and death are difficult topics for our society, and this is true even for some Pagans. It was important to contribute to this book because I know there are resources and support available for Pagans, and I wish I had known that in the midst of my own grief. By sharing what I've learned, I hope it helps someone who is in pain and feels alone.

Reverend Wes Isley | Author

Contributor to "Do I Have To Wear Black?"

Death is never an easy subject to approach, but Mortellus writes about the subject with both compassion and insight. There's practical information on the funeral industry here, tremendous insight into Pagan views on death, and several heartfelt and complete passing over rites for a number of Pagan traditions.


This book is a must for Pagan clergy and coven leaders, and will be consulted by Witches and Pagans who perform such rites for decades to come. This is something that belongs on every Witch's bookshelf, because eventually, they are going to need it.

Jason Mankey | Author

Transformative Witchcraft

The topic of funerals in the greater Pagan and Wiccan community can be overwhelming: we’re a diverse folk with many different beliefs. “Do I have to Wear Black” is an excellent starting point for that important conversation.The rites we share with the Dead do more than say goodbye: they heal, they comfort, they express grief, and they strengthen our relationships with all our loved ones, including the Dead. Pagan families and practitioners deserve to grieve and acknowledge death in a way that is uniquely theirs. “Do I Have to Wear Black” helps the reader navigate those waters.

Acacia Orris | Artist

Contributor to "Do I Have To Wear Black?"